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/ 03 Mar 2015

Law School Careers Day at The Law Society

My colleague Susanne Seaton and I were delighted to volunteer at the Law Schools Careers Day, a joint initiative hosted by The Law Society, Bar Council and CILEx, on 27 February 2015. The day was part of The Law Society’s widening access and social inclusion strategy programme, which affords school students from non-traditional backgrounds the chance to gain a broad insight into legal careers. The purpose of the day was to introduce the students to the legal profession and motivate them to exercise the skills required for a legal career, including communication, debating, analytical and reasoning skills. Lawyers from across the profession volunteered at the event and we enjoyed meeting each other in the morning, over a refreshing coffee spread which made us feel much at home!

The students attending were recruited through Ark Academy, an Education charity, and ranged from 15 to 18 years old. As such, some were exploring with the possibility of a legal career whilst others were applying to study law at university. All students were encouraged to network with us and take as much as possible from the day.

The day involved interactive case studies workshops, in which students were split into groups. Our role as volunteer lawyers was to facilitate and encourage the students to debate the issues at hand. The students were presented with an interesting case study involving causes of action in defamation and breach of privacy case through Facebook. It was based on a real case in the High Court, which I read with interest beforehand. It was interesting to see how far the students’ thinking matched the submissions made and judgment in the case. The case study fostered interesting and pertinent debates about the use of social media and freedom of expression verses the right to privacy. It was particularly interesting to hear the views of the students, who were admittedly far more familiar with the world of social media than ourselves! Our team was assisted by myself, a trainee solicitor working in private practice, an in-house lawyer and a barrister. At the end of the group exercise we were able to share our stories and tips with the students, who were keen to hear about our routes into law. They were able to ask questions and hear about our different experiences, finding it particularly useful to understand the differences between the working life of barristers and solicitors.

Following the case studies we heard a panel discussion on opportunities in the legal profession. It was interesting to listen to the stories of different members of the profession and the unique experiences of working as a barrister, solicitor, legal executive and in-house. Students’ minds were opened to the rewards of our profession, in addition to the risks and challenges to be aware of.

Later on in the day the students went on to take part in a mock trial, again a fantastic opportunity to develop practical lawyering skills.

It is always rewarding to support The Law Society’s initiatives and advise students at the early stages of their legal journey. We enjoyed the event very much and hope the students left with a greater appreciation of routes into law.

Sehaj Lamba
Trainee Solicitor at Hanne & Co and South London JLD Committee Member

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